Last week I led the "fiction track" of the Explorati teen writers' boot camp. Twenty young writers and I gathered together every day for four days to focus on writing. Whooee! (Meanwhile, other groups concentrated on writing nonfiction, screenplays, or poetry.)
The camp turned out to be just what I needed to feel happy, alive, and inspired. Is that hard to believe? It shouldn't be, but it's kind of boggling how many cultural messages are out there about how "difficult" it is to be around teenagers; how much trouble they are; how touchy, out-of-control and maddening they can be; how etcetera. . .
Maybe I'm just lucky, or maybe I simply like teens in a way that most people don't. I suspect it's a combination. At any rate, "my" young writers were generous, sensitive, fun, funny, interesting, entertaining, and kind. Not only that, but they were excellent writers, and highly motivated to write even better than they already did.
I felt really blessed to be there. And I can't wait to read their books in the future!